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It’s ok, I’m here now

It’s ok, I’m here now
It’s ok, I’m here now

After two and a half loooooong months away due to an unplanned medical snafu, I am gratefully alive and finally venturing back into crafting.

Unlike the arrogant little tot featured in my project, I was much less confident about getting back to crafting. I decided to make the transition a little easier by using some of my favorite things for my first project: Gypsy Soul Lasercut’s Mini House Shadowbox, Paper Calliope’s Snarky Ancestors, 7gypsies paper and Seth Apter’s embossing powders.


Tutorial how to make I’m Here Now Little House


1. Begin by running a baby wipe along all the edges of the Mini House Shadowbox to remove residue. Trace the back of the house onto the back of Snarky Ancestors #4. Cut out the image and adhere to the interior of the house. Color the tabs with a back marker so that any gaps won’t be visible. You can also use the marker to darken all the exposed edges of the house.

2. Trace the bottom, sides and roof of the house onto scrapbook paper and cut out. Adhere the papers to what will be the interior of the botttom, sides and roof.


3. Apply embossing ink to the picture of the toddler and cover with vintage beeswax embossing powder.

4. Heat until the embossing powder is melted.

5. Assemble the house except for the roof using a strong glue on the edges.


6. Trace the bottom, sides and back of the house onto scrapbook paper and cut out. These will be your exterior papers. Adhere them to the exterior of the house.

7. Add the roof pieces to the house. You will see further down that I saved this step until later, which created a problem.



8. Create a soft gray by mixing white and Payne’s gray acrylic paint. Paint the exterior of the roof pieces with this mixture as well as cocoa bean, marigold and quinacridone nickle azo gold. Dry with heat gun.


69 Apply embossing ink to the roof pieces and cover with Chunky Rust embossing powder.



When I added the roof, I discovered my mistake of not assembling it before painting and embossing. I had to go back in and paint and emboss all the tab edges.

10. Cut out the saying from Snarky Ancestors (or come up with your own message) leaving additional cardstock along the bottom. Score the cardstock below the writing, fold to create a tab and glue the tab to the bottom of the house.


11. To complete your project adhere miniature flowers and greenery.

Great Stuff

Mini House Shadowbox #3

Paper Calliope Snarky Ancestors #4

Baked Texture Chunky Rust Embossing Powder

Baked Texture Vintage Beeswax Embossing powder

7gypsies paper

Embossing ink

Acrylic paint: white, Payne’s gray, cocoa bean, marigold, quinacridone nickel azo gold

Black marker

Miniature flowers and greens


Under construction

Under construction

Please pardon the weird sizing. My new design is under construction and there are a few glitches. That’s the problem with being a designer and not a programmer! Hopefully all will be corrected soon!



An afternoon of creative fun with Silks shrink art

An afternoon of creative fun with Silks shrink art


Once in awhile a project comes along and surprises you with childlike and carefree moments of creative play.This was one of those projects.

I got a much-needed respite when I spent a recent afternoon painting, shrinking and melting bits of plastic into fused combinations of happy color. I hope you hop on over to the ColourArte blog to see find out how to create some of this fun for yourself.


Baby-snatching tornadoes and altered art–no really

Baby-snatching tornadoes and altered art–no really


Today the Robin’s Nest is featuring Part Two of the tutorial of Behind the Curtain–a Steampunk Homage to Oz.

I’m proud of this shadowbox and encourage you to check it out. You can also read how it led to my memory of baby-snatching tornadoes.

I feel a little traumatized

You see, I felt I needed to explain over at the Robin’s Nest why I don’t really like the Wizard of Oz. That led me to explain my family’s long-running joke about how they forgot me during a tornado.

When tornado sirens sounded, my family retreated to the safety of the basement. Only then did they ask one another, “Do you have Betsy?”

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Now showing . . . At a craft studio near you

Now showing . . . At a craft studio near you
Now showing . . . At a craft studio near you




The movie Paper Towns hit theaters earlier this week. Although, I’m not particularly interested in this flick, the title caught my eye. Paper Towns–could a more perfect title for a crafter exist? If you want to learn how to make this Paper Town Three-Drawer Night Light Unit, featuring rows of paper houses, please check out the free tutorial.



This three-drawer night light unit had simple beginnings as a leftover gift box and some foam core.

There’s an interesting side note about this project. Although he never said so directly, it was clear my Dad was not a fan of my art. Endless layers, textures, ephemera and more are the exact opposite of his style. A purist architect, who had once worked for the famed Eero Saarinen, my dad believed that “more did not make better”.

Due to both my journalism and graphic design backgrounds, I appreciated, understood and applied this approach in my professional work. However, crafting is my escape from rigid rules and precise measurements. As a result, most of my art has lots of “more”.

He suggested more than once that I design sympathy cards because there were none simple enough for his liking. I gave him a couple of samples containing a line art flower surrounded by lots of white space, yet those were still too ornate. At some point I gave up. Honestly though, I think the only card that would have pleased him would have been one teeny, terse phrase written in Helvetica All Caps:



It is safe to say he was a no nonsense man.

My dad passed away in June. As I was working on Paper Towns, my sister noticed it and chuckled, “You are channeling your inner father.” She was right. I finally made some art he would have liked.

So, Dad, this one’s for you. Thank you for being my night light and unwavering beacon of safety.

You won’t believe your eyes when you see what this ancient tile is really made from

You won’t believe your eyes when you see what this ancient tile is really made from


Take a look at this time and weather worn sun tile. Now, look again. Can you believe I made it from a simple sheet of foam?


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Celebrate the past and future with this calendar gift card book

Celebrate the past and future with this calendar gift card book


So it was just a week ago that my 8.5 ounce baby boy was born. Well….a week and 18 years ago. It feels like a few days ago. Cliche or not, where the hell did the time go?

Since he is past the age of wanting action figures for presents and since he is always broke, his dad and I decided to give him small denomination gift cards that he can use throughout the year. I tied it into the chance to remind him about the incredibly awesome parents who threw so many over-the-top theme birthday parties over the years. Aaaannnnd, since I’m still Mom, I decided to also use the opportunity to boost his awareness about Mother’s Day other important days throughout the year. Read the rest of this entry